“Kislyak has been a subject of permanent trolling in the U.S. in recent months,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova told the state-run Rossia-1 television channel last Friday.

According to Vedomosti, Kislyak’s upcoming job change can hardly be called a promotion as the Federation Council, Russia’s upper chamber of parliament, has little actual power.

“It’s the destination of those who can’t be placed anywhere else, but are not ready to retire,” the newspaper cited political scientist Abbas Gallyamov as saying. “To get out of there and get back to an upward trend is something that only very few have managed to do.”

Kislyak, who returns to Moscow on July 22, will be replaced by deputy foreign minister Anatoly Antonov.